Classic Banana Bread

Katherine Gillen

We see those cheetah-spotted bananas sitting on your counter, making their journey from ripe to sludge. Banana bread time? You’re going to need a reliable, foolproof recipe for that. That’s what our classic banana bread is for. It’s tender, sweet and, yes, moist every time.

A few tips: A stand mixer will make this recipe come together the fastest, but you can also use a hand mixer. And if you don’t have sour cream, don’t sweat. It can be swapped in equal amounts for plain yogurt, mascarpone cheese or even buttermilk. Want to add nuts or chocolate chips? We fully support you (especially if it’s chocolate chips).

Chocolate Banana Bread Babka


½ cup (113g) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup (198g) granulated sugar

2 large (100g) eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1½ cups (180g) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup (227g) mashed banana (from about 3 very ripe medium bananas)

½ cup (114g) sour cream

Sparkling sugar or demerara sugar, optional


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-by-4- or 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with butter or nonstick spray, then line with a piece of parchment paper so there’s some overhang on the long sides of the pan. (This will help you remove the loaf later.)

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition until emulsified. Add the vanilla, and mix well to combine.

3. In a small bowl, add the flour, baking soda and salt, and whisk to combine. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet, and mix on low speed until combined. Add the mashed bananas and sour cream, and mix until just combined. (A few lumps are OK, but try not to overmix.)

4. Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle course sparkling sugar or demerara sugar on top, if using. Transfer to the oven and bake until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean with just a few crumbs, 55 to 60 minutes.

Note: Plain yogurt, crème fraîche or buttermilk would work in place of the sour cream.

Katherine Gillen

Senior Food Editor

Katherine Gillen is PureWow’s senior food editor. She’s a writer, recipe developer and food stylist with a degree in culinary arts and professional experience in New York City...
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